A “neomasculinity” group that’s been labeled “pro-rape” has canceled an International Meeting Day that would have included gatherings in the United States. The Return of Kings organization was founded by blogger and pick-up artist Daryush Valizadeh, 36, who also goes by the moniker Roosh. Among the pearls of wisdom on the ROK website is the notion that a “woman’s value significantly depends on her fertility and beauty” and that “gender equality is a myth that has no scientific basis.”
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Roosh’s Most Infamous Blog Post Proposes to ‘Make Rape Legal if Done on Private Property’
I'll state once again: the "How To Stop Rape" article was satire. Neither me or my supporters want rape to be legalized. The media is lying.—
Roosh (@rooshv) February 03, 2016
Arguably the most controversial blog post from Roosh was February 2015’s “How to Stop Rape.” Despite his protests that the article was satire, Roosh attracted the ire of the Internet for his piece. The crux of the argument in the blog is that rape should be legal “if done on private property.” Here’s an excerpt:
Without daddy government to protect her, a girl would absolutely not enter a private room with a man she doesn’t know or trust unless she is absolutely sure she is ready to sleep with him. Consent is now achieved when she passes underneath the room’s door frame, because she knows that that man can legally do anything he wants to her when it comes to sex. Bad encounters are sure to occur, but these can be learning experiences for the poorly trained woman so she can better identify in the future the type of good man who will treat her like the delicate flower that she believes she is.
Among other rape-related talking points published on the Return of Kings website are:
I often hear women do not report rapes right away because they are ashamed or humiliated to report that it ever happened. This is pure bullshit.
As well as:
A woman who claims to have been raped in her own house by a man she knew beforehand is a suspicious claim, since a man looking to rape someone would not pick a target who could identify him to the police.
More quotes can be found in Buzzfeed’s list of the most offensive things on the ROK website.
2. ROK’s ‘International Meeting Day’ Has Been Canceled Amid Outrage & Planned Protests
On the group’s website, Roosh has bemoaned the media’s attempt to portray the Return of Kings International Meeting Day, which was planned for February 6, as a “rape gathering where we will strategize on how to rape women.” Roosh added that due to reports in Australia, from the Sydney Morning Herald among others, he would “likely be banned” from going to the country. Meanwhile the Journal.ie from Ireland, where meetings were also planned, reports that the group’s members are asked to identify each other by asking “Do you know where the nearest pet shop is?”
In a Twitter post on February 3, when the media storm against the Return of Kings really kicked in, Roosh wrote that International Meeting Day “will not be cancelled” and that “We’re on Columbus’ ship and there’s no turning back at this point.” However, a subsequent post on Returnofkings.com announced the event’s cancelation:
I can no longer guarantee the safety or privacy of the men who want to attend on February 6, especially since most of the meetups can not be made private in time. While I can’t stop men who want to continue meeting in private groups, there will be no official Return Of Kings meetups. The listing page has been scrubbed of all locations. I apologize to all the supporters who are let down by my decision.
3. The Group Is Backing Donald Trump to Become U.S. President in 2016
Among the many posts on the Return of Kings website are blogs dedicated to Donald Trump and his campaign to be the Republican nominee for president. In the wake of Trump’s defeat to Ted Cruz in the Iowa caucus, a blog post appeared asking, “Did Microsoft Commit Voter Fraud In Iowa To Ensure Donald Trump’s Defeat?” This was based on the theory that as Microsoft is a large contributor to Marco Rubio’s campaign, they shouldn’t have been the company charged with tallying the votes for the caucus.
4. There Are Nearly 13,000 Members of Return of Kings on Facebook
5. Roosh Has Been Described as ‘Hateful’ & ‘Misogynistic’ by the Southern Poverty Law Center
In its March 2012 “The Year in Hate and Extremism” report, the Southern Poverty Law Center listed Roosh V as “hateful” and “misogynistic.” This label was mocked at the time by other outlets, including Business Insider.